Twenty-five minutes after it took off, cabin pressure dropped in an AirAsia's Indonesia-bound flight and the plane plummeted from 35,000 ft to 10,000 ft in a matter of nine minutes. Flight QZ535 started its journey from Australia and had 151 passengers on board. Once the flight started losing altitude, oxygen masks released from the overhead panel.
Videos of people in distress with oxygen masks dangling in front of the passengers have been doing the rounds. An alarm went off and the crew members asked the passenger to assume the brace position.
AirAsia later explained that the flight went through some "technical issue". The airline further mentioned that the safety of its passengers is its priority and that they are sorry for the inconvenience caused.
He also added that there was no panic before the crew went hysterical.
A passenger called Leah told reporters that she even messaged her family and said good bye and just hoped that they would receive it. "We were all pretty much saying goodbye to each other. It was really upsetting," she further added.
After the mid-air scare the flight eventually returned to Perth where it landed safely.
Accident investigators, Australian Transport Safety Bureau, said it was investigating the incident. Spokesman for Civil Aviation Safety Authority, Peter Gibson, said that inquiries are being made and the airline has been asked about what transpired at 35,000 ft.
(With agency inputs)